About the tardigrade.org web site


[Home] [Books] [Plants & Wildlife] [Organizations] [Nurseries] [Events] [More] [Index]

Made with a Mac Any browser Valid HTML 4.0! Valid CSS! Level Double-A conformance icon, 
          W3C-WAI Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0


For the curious, here are some of the inner workings of this web site. The entire site doesn't yet rate all of the above validations, but I'm working on it!

Web Design - Content Above Form

To some visitors, this site seems, well, plain vanilla. On the other hand, that makes pages here load pretty quickly compared to most others. It doesn't waste your screen space (you can use a small window for almost everything if you like). It doesn't force you to use colors or a font style that you can't read easily, or make you load a pile of images you don't really want to see so that you have to hunt through the static to find what you're looking for. Most important of all, it's available to absolutely everyone, no matter how you access the web, or which browser you choose to use.

By separating content from presentation, following the HTML 4.01 standard strictly, using style sheets for formatting, and following the Web Accessibility Initiative guidelines, all of the content is available to people who need extra large font sizes or who need the pages read to them aloud; to people using their Palm on the road; and to people who simply prefer the raw speed of a text-based browser like Lynx. There's an added advantage to me in that as HTML grows into xHTML and then into XML over the next couple of years, I won't have to play catch up. Web pages that meet the standards are already compatible with the future!

Here are some good starting points to learn more about designing web pages that are accessible and that meet the standards, and some tools to show you how well you're doing:

Software

All pages and graphics (except perhaps those contributed by and credited to other people) have been created entirely on a Macintosh, using purely non-monopolistic software. Most of the HTML has been written with the help of Pagespinner. Some of the stylesheets have been created with Style Master. Photos have been taken with a Casio QV-8000SX digital camera, and minimally processed with GraphicConverter to reduce the download size. General text has been written and edited primarily in BBEdit. Spell checking by Spellcatcher (when I remember to use it!) The databases are controlled by a modified dbman, and forms processing by the excellent Soupermail, both perl cgi scripts. (What databases? What forms? you ask... Remember, patience is a virtue!)

Server

The web site itself is run from a Pentium box running the Linux operating system and the Apache web server. It's maintained by phpwebhosting.